KAZIRANGA, Oct 12 - Even though the State Government often claims to have brought about a sea change in the health sector, but Kaziranga, which is an international hotspot of wildlife and nature tourism , lacks even the basic emergency health facilities as far as accident, maternity and cardio-related issues are concerned. According to sources at Kohora hospital, there is an immediate need of at least one more doctor to run the hospital smoothly for 24 hours as a single doctor cannot be expected to look after a large section of population in Kaziranga, including tourists, both domestic and international. Many a time, local patients are compelled to visit Bokakhat or Golaghat at odd hours to treat emergency cases.
Talking to this Correspondent, Dhiren Phukan, a retired forest officer at Kaziranga rued, “for how long should the tourists and people of Kaziranga have to suffer because of non-availability of an emergency hospital. Though building construction of the 30-bed hospital has since been completed, why has the OPD or Emergency sections not started functioning in the greater interest of tourists and the local public. Despite the Government having formally declared the tourist season from the current month, but it has not cared to start functioning of the 30-bed model hospital. Where will the tourists go if any emergency situation arises at odd hours?” he questioned.
According to sources at Kohora hospital , there are many drawbacks in the newly-constructed 30-bed model hospital building at Kohora. The emergency entrance towards the ward is very inclined and there is a every possibility that whoever walks through that passage, including patients, are likely to lose balance and tumble down. This is a very serious problem. Even if an ambulance is parked, it will then stand in an inclined position, resulting in great difficulty in carrying patients from the ambulance. Secondly, due to lack of necessary staff quarters for the newly-appointed doctors and staff nurses for the upcoming model hospital, there is an uncertainty about the functioning of the model hospital.
Sources also added that there is no fourth grade employee at the hospital, nor any night chowkidar, which is not at all well equipped to address emergency situations. It is worth mentioning that many people, including tourists have lost their lives due to lack of emergency medical treatment at Kohora. Such emergency patients had to rush to either Bokakhat or Nagaon, but could not be saved.
Sometimes, when forest personnel are attacked and injured by wild animals inside the forest, valuable time is often lost for carrying the patients to either Bokakhat or Nagoan, leading to avoidable tragedies. Only yesterday, a person from Kohora who met with a serious accident died at Bokakhat Civil Hospital as there is no emergency medical facility available at Kohora hospital.